The joys of fatherhood

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Celebrity fathers Ogie Alcasid, Ariel Rivera, and Cesar Montano are, no doubt, happy with how their respective careers have turned out, but they all agree they experienced far greater joy when they became parents. Needless to say, fatherhood has put meaning to their lives.

Let’s get to know their thoughts on fatherhood and child-rearing experiences.

Ogie Alcasid: “I found my place in the greater scheme of things”

“I found my place in the greater scheme of things,” uttered Ogie from a previous interview. Ogie is a doting and very supportive dad to three children (two girls, Leila and Sarah from his first marriage with former beauty queen Michelle Van Eimeren; and one son Nathaniel James with wife Songbird Regine Velasquez-Alcasid).

Ogie with his children. Courtesy: Ogie Alcasid on Instagram

Ogie is enjoying his role as a father to the fullest. “Every moment that I’m with my children is important for me,” he shared. He became more of a child, too, “because when you’re already a parent you have to play with your kids. At the same time, you can’t take things for granted.”

He advises parents to have time for their family. “Even if it only takes two to three hours a day, make it a point to play and talk to your kids if you don’t want them to grow up not knowing you,” Ogie said.

Ariel Rivera: “The love for a parent to a child is unconditional love”

“There are no words to express my feelings when I became a father,” intimated Ariel from an earlier interview. “Now, I realized that your love for a son is very different from the love you have for your wife and mother.”

Ariel with his wife Gelli and children Joaquin and Julio. Courtesy: Jose Ariel Rivera FB page

With their two sons around, Joaquin and Julio (who are now attending schools in Canada), Ariel and his wife Gelli de Belen have become closer and stronger through times. The couple opted not to have a nanny when their children were still younger. “We didn’t get a nanny because I want to follow what my parents have done for us. My parents raised the five of us in Canada without a yaya. If they were able to do it with five kids, why can’t we do it? Kayang-kaya naman. Ang pinoy kasi gusto natin parati tayong komportable.”

The lesson he learned from child-rearing is the love of a parent to a child. “You’ll never know until you have one,” he said, “It’s unconditional love.”

The earnest balladeer has attained more depth and maturity in his musical career and personal life.

Cesar Montano: “Teach them the value of hard work and money”

Actor, film producer, and director Cesar Montano admitted that he’s a very lenient parent. “Kasi ngayon hindi na panahon ng lecture nang lecture sa bata. The children will not always listen to you, but for sure they will imitate you. ‘Yon ang paniniwala ko,” he explained from a previous interview.

As a parent, he has experienced the worst. But one thing he learned from it is “life should go on no matter what happened. Everyone learns from the lessons of life.” Needless to say, he has developed a broader perspective in life. “Lahat naman ng ito ginagawa ko para sa kanila. Mapalaki ko sila ng maganda at magkaroon ng magandang buhay.”

Cesar has admitted that he’s a very lenient parent. Courtesy: Cesar Montano FB page

One thing he learned from child-rearing, and which he inherited from his late dad, Genovevo, is to make life a little difficult for your children. “Hindi dapat bigay hilig. Hindi kailangan ng lahat ng pangangailangan nila ibibigay mo. Teach them the value of hard work and money.”

Life in Sta. Ana, he said, was the best time of his childhood days. His favorite hangout in Sta. Ana is Plaza Hugo, where he would always play basketball with his peers.

Did he imagine that he’ll become a popular star someday? “Ay, oo. Noong nagtitinda ako ng ice cream sabi ko siguro magiging sikat ako. Hawak ko ang bibingka, sabi ko ‘Cesar Montano ako paglaki,’” he guffawed. “Hindi ko akalaing maiisip ko ‘yon.”

Cesar is proud of his roots. “Siyempre. Dahil hindi ka magiging ganito ngayon, kung hindi ka magiging proud sa pinagdaanan mo. To be able to spend your life in your own way is a success in itself,” he ended.

(Based on the published feature article in the old Mirror Weekly magazine by the same author)

Featured photos: Courtesy of Jose Ariel Rivera FB page, Ogie Alcasid FB page, and Cesar Montano FB page

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